January 22, 2013
Nick Dirks’ Van
Mt. Bachelor’s parking lot was empty, save for a few RV’s and vans parked in the corner of the lot. Looking for Nick’s van, I spotted it nestled between two pickup truck campers. Pulling up behind the group of campers, I parked and walked towards Nick’s van. Icicles hung from the corners of every vehicle as a result of the mid-teens temperatures the night before. Knocking on the window, I heard movement in the van, and opened the door.
“Rise and shine, it’s butt whipping time!” I said, drowning out Nick and Alex’s groans as I opened the front door and hopped into the passenger seat.
“You guys stay warm last night? It’s fucking freezing out.”
“We had the heater cranked all night, it wasn’t that bad,” Nick said from the fold down bed in the back of the van.
“Ha, how was the floor?” I asked Alex. He lay on the ground wrapped in a Poler napsack surrounded by a few empty 12 ounce beer cans and a bag of chips.
“It was fine. What time is it?”
“Uhh… Let me check..8:15,” I said checking my phone. ”It’s dumping out!”
“Yah, you guys are tripping! I’m going to go get first lift. They start running in fifteen”
“Uhghh…” Nick rolled over onto his stomach. ”We’ll see you up there.”
“Have it your way dude…” I said tracking in snow out of the open door. ”Give me a ring.”
Ass, Gas or Grass, Nobody Rides for Free. For the record these empties were from parked activities, not mobile.
Shutting the door, I grabbed my board and headed towards the lift line. They’ll be up in an hour I thought to myself.
I first met Nick snowboarding on Mt. Hood ten years ago. Nick, myself and our friend Jarad ripped around Mt. Hood Meadows like we owned the place, cutting lift lines, going out of bounds and occupying the lodge. In the winter of 2004, we went on our first road trips by ourselves together in search of snow and hand rails. When we graduated from high school, I decided to go to college, instead of focusing on snowboarding. Nick went on to be a pro shredder and has rode his board in places like Lebanon, Russia and Chile. Whenever I came back to Portland, I’d meet up and chew the fat with Nick and Jarad. During college and my stint in New York, these stories of old times, and Nick and Jarad’s current shenanigans, made me question my path. Seven years later, we are both living in our vans.
Note the icicles and empty beer holder.
The inside of #vanlife.
The Vantasy’s custom board rack. Pure Cambvibes.
An hour later, my phone rang in my pocket as I road up the lift. Sitting on my gloves, I wrangled my phone out of my breast pocket with my slow moving fingers.
“Where are you guys? It’s going off!” I laughed, tucking my phone under my goggle strap.
“We are at the bottom of Sunrise (a lift). Where are you?”
“I’m a few chairs a head of you, see you at the top.” Shutting off my phone I shoved it back into my pock and checked the zipper. I couldn’t remember the last time Nick and I took laps together. It must have been at least seven years. I hooted in anticipation.
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